Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | Video | Questions Of the Day | Search


Jim Anderton Speech: Mayors Taskforce for Jobs

Mayors Taskforce for Jobs

3:30 pm Friday, 7 March 2003 Mayors Taskforce for Jobs 1st floor, Christchurch City Council, 237 Tuam Street, Christchurch

Garry Moore Jan Francis Sukhi Turner Mayors

I want to congratulate you all for your work in creating jobs for New Zealanders.

Sustainable, high paying jobs are the major priority of the Progressive Party. I know from working with you that they are your aim as well.

I personally believe the single most important way that we can help people and New Zealand is to have full employment.

Work gives people confidence and independence which make for a stronger, safer and happier community.

In the early days of this government we faced some opposition from some local authorities, and others, that jobs and economic development were not roles that local government had any responsibility for.

In part because of the creation of the Mayor’s Taskforce this has now changed.

Many of you here realised that if it wasn’t your role jobs might never get created.

Your prioritisation of youth employment is also one shared by the Labour Progressive Government, and we have been proud to work in partnership with you. However there is much to do.

The unemployment rate for people under 25 is still around 11 per cent. This is at the same time that we have unemployment at a 15 year low and we face skills shortages up and down New Zealand in a range of industries.

We need to work to upskill and train our young people. This Government aims to have 6,000 new apprentices by the end of this year.

I note that Allied Telesyn here in Christchurch recruited 30 top computer science graduates this year to boost their innovation and development.

Population projections indicate that increasingly, the workforce will consist of Maori and Pacific Island people, who have traditionally been over-represented in negative economic and social statistics.

2001 census shows Maori and Pacific people make up 18.6% of the working age population (15-64 years). This is projected to rise to about 30% in 2051.

The challenge is to ensure we are giving young Maori and pacific island people the opportunity to make a contribution to our economy.

If we can harness the potential that these young people have then we will have a much stronger future.

Full employment will mean we are generating more income and will be able to fund health, education and other social services for all our citizens.

In 1970, New Zealand had roughly the same per capita income as Australia. Since then we have we have fallen significantly behind.
If we had achieved just 1 per cent additional annual per capita growth over that 30 year period (corresponding to 3.1 per cent real GDP growth), we would have been now on a par with Australia (which ranks 12th in the OECD).

Stronger economic growth would have increased the incomes of all New Zealanders and allowed us to provide the world-class government services that New Zealanders want.

Growth is not an end in itself. An average of 1 per cent greater growth over the last 30 years would mean that $4.2 billion extra could be spent on education ($3500 per student) each year as well as an extra $3.7 billion on health. Extra 1 per cent would mean the average worker would now get $175 per week extra.

The goal of returning to the top half of the OECD rankings is an ambitious one. Over the 30 years from 1970, NZ dropped from 9th place to 20th place (out of 30) – between Spain and Portugal. It will take NZ a decade of 4 per cent growth to get to where Australia is now.

The key for NZ to achieve this ambitious goal is for our innovation processes to improve. Because of our history of isolation and lack of resources, as a nation we have developed a reputation for finding unusual, but effective, solutions to problems.

We must build on this strength of ideas and become a nation known internationally for our innovative products, our creativity, our skills and our lifestyle. GIF is not solely about achieving a level of per capita growth, it’s about achieving the best we can as a nation.

The government is committed to working with all parts of the economy to make this happen. But, ultimately, achieving the growth target will require dedication and passion at the local level, as well as nationally.

As leaders in their communities, Mayors have a vital role to play in building localised support for economic growth.

The new Local Government Act seeks to provide for greater flexibility and certainty, and allows councils to respond effectively to the changing needs of their communities.

The government’s Regional Partnerships Programme aims to help regions set their economic development goals and work to bring these to fruition. Mayors have the local knowledge of businesses and the people - what they want and how they want to achieve it – to make this process work.

Growth is continuing though it is slowing in some regions as businesses confront barriers such as:

a lack of skilled workers; a need for better infrastructure including transport and communications technology, a shortage of skilled workers, and access to investment and venture capital.

This Government is committed to working in partnership with regions to address barriers to further economic development.

Last week I asked officials from the Ministry of Economic Development and Industry New Zealand to report on the Wellington region’s economic performance and outlook. I have also asked them to assess the impact and effectiveness of current central government infrastructure, business and development programmes in the region.

Another region I am planning to work with is Northland.

As Minister for Economic Industry and Regional Development I am here to work with you for the common goal of having vibrant communities which have sustainable growth.

I am here to work with you to create jobs. Our communities expect nothing less.

Thank you.

© Scoop Media

Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines


Also, Loan Interest: Productivity Commission On Tertiary Education

Key recommendations include better quality control; making it easier for students to transfer between courses; abolishing University Entrance; enabling tertiary institutions to own and control their assets; making it easier for new providers to enter the system; and facilitating more and faster innovation by tertiary education providers... More>>


Higher Payments: Wellington Regional Council Becomes A Living Wage Employer

Councillor Sue Kedgley said she was delighted that the Wellington Regional Council unanimously adopted her motion to become a Living Wage employer, making it the first regional council in New Zealand to do so. More>>


Scoop Images:
Dame Patsy Reddy Sworn In As Governor-General

This morning Dame Patsy Reddy was sworn in as the New Zealand Realm’s 21st Governor-General. The ceremony began with a pōwhiri to welcome Dame Patsy and her husband Sir David Gascoigne to Parliament. More>>


Ruataniwha: DOC, Hawke's Bay Council Developer Take Supreme Court Appeal

The Department of Conservation and Hawke's Bay Regional Investment Company (HBRIC) are appealing to the Supreme Court over a conservation land swap which the Court of Appeal halted. More>>


With NZ's Marama Davidson: Women’s Flotilla Leaves Sicily – Heading For Gaza

Women representing 13 countries spanning five continents began their journey yesterday on Zaytouna-Oliva to the shores of Gaza, which has been under blockade since 2007. On board are a Nobel Peace Laureate, three parliamentarians, a decorated US diplomat, journalists, an Olympic athlete, and a physician. A list of the women with their background can be found here. More>>

Gordon Campbell: On The Key Style Of Crisis Management

At Monday’s post Cabinet press conference Key was in his finest wide- eyed “Problem? What problem?” mode. No, there wasn’t really a problem that top MPI officials had been at odds with each other over the meaning of the fisheries policy and how that policy should be pursued... More>>


Mt Roskill: Greens Will Not Stand In Likely Post-Goff By-Election

“The Green Party’s priority is changing the Government in 2017, and as part of that we’ve decided that we won’t stand a candidate in the probable Mt Roskill by-election... This decision shows the Memorandum of Understanding between Labour and the Green Party is working." More>>


Get More From Scoop



Search Scoop  
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news